November 13th, 2012

helpful nudge, japanese garden with amber

Sow a seed, I'll give you a flower.

Apparently I feel like living dangerously this morning, so here's a meme from swan_tower:

Tell me about a story I haven't written, and I'll give you one sentence from that story.

As she says, at least one sentence. Maybe more.

I haven't been having problems with short story juices flowing, so this is possibly a particularly bad idea. But it also looks like fun, and hey, we like fun. Fun gets us good places.

One of the rules people always list for writing is that you must finish what you write. This is great as long as it's not a straitjacket. If you're aiming at an audience, you must finish at least some of what you write, sure, definitely. But I think some novice writers--and some experienced writers who are in a slump or a transition phase--hear that "rule" and subconsciously translate it to "you must finish every story you start before going on to another." I have--look, I write kind of a lot of short stories. You know that because I'm 34 years old and have sold 91 of them. I don't think it's immodest to say that's kind of a lot. But I have a ton of half-finished stories sitting around and even more smaller seeds. Sometimes things have to germinate. Sometimes things are what Mike Ford called nurse logs. It's a jungle back in there. The last few weeks, though, things have been calling out to get finished, a few at a time, and that's satisfying too.

(Of the trudging along on the novel, let us not speak.)